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Singapore's traditionally staid queer women's scene is starting to get busy

There's now a dedicated women's bar, and more parties than we know what to do with.

By SG Staff | Feb 16, 2017

  • Singapore's traditionally staid queer women's scene is starting to get busy
    Mira and Nana of Ladies District

The gay bars of Neil Road may be the epicenter of Singapore's scant gay male community, but the scene for women has been even more limited, especially since Play, which had weekly lesbian nights, closed down a couple years ago. With the exception of the veteran Herstory and Two Queens Asia parties, there has been nary a place for queer women to gather. That changed in recent weeks when relatively new women's party planners Ladies District decided to open a permanent bar on Little India's Dunlop Street. 

While generally quiet during the week, a fixed location means that Singapore's queer women no longer have to wait weeks for the next party: there are two to three small ones happening at Ladies District every month. For the founders of Ladies District, start-up businesswoman Mira Mekeh and freelance designer Nana Aw, the scene is getting more exciting.

"The queer scene in Singapore is definitely more vibrant and active as compared to the past. There weren't many places for queer women to go to and to party," Nana explains. "With increased awareness, people are more accepting towards the LGBTQ community than before as the queer women in Singapore are much more vocal now than in the past."

Ladies District are not the only (relatively) new women's community. Also hosting regular events is She+Pride, the brainchild of fine art broker Norah Soeb and financial consultant Ryvre Ruan. Parties aside, they put together regular support groups, film screenings, sports get togethers and other social events. Ryvre says, "We want to be the bridge that connects the LBTQ community via our events and activities, and to create a space for the queer women to be visible as much as they want to or as private as they need."

All in all, between a brand new bar, regular parties on the calendar and not to mention the big annual White Party just a few months away, we'd venture to say the queer women's scene in Singapore has never been this happening.

Interested? Here are some parties to get you started:

Mabuhay Singalong (Feb 17)

Bring your pipes to this Temple Street KTV for a night of all-women's karaoke courtesy of She+Pride. The event is private, so if you're not out or only semi-out, you should be in good hands. Tickets are $12 on Peatix.

Single Girls Night Party (Feb 18)

One of the frequent, small-scale themed parties at the Ladies District bar on Dunlop Street, which seem to happen every other weekend, this one is a mixer for single women. DJ Val will spin 90s hits and sing-along worthy anthems, and there will be some good deals on bottles: $120 for house pour bottles, $200 for Hendricks, and so on. Oh, and $12 beers and $10 tequila shots and Jaeger bombs. (You can probably gather that the scene here is firmly 20-something and party-party.) Free entry. 

Valentine's Traffic Light Party (Feb 25)

Want to meet Miz Right (Now) but hate 90s sing-alongs? Fear not. Ladies District is following it up the following weekend with this themed singles party, promising the same great drink deals, except this time it's DJ Riot Fingers spinning hip hop, trap and R&B. Give your inner introvert the night off because you also have the option of sporting a color: Red means "I'm taken", amber means "Ask me to see" and green means "I'm available".

Pink Saturday (Feb 25)

If you prefer your parties more massive than cozy, that same night, the She+Pride folks are teaming up with new-ish Clarke Quay club-lounge VLV for a huge blow-out, with DJ Mass Ramli visiting from Dubai, some live acoustic music by the dreamy Zsa Zsa Scorpion and Amanda Tee, a drag show by Miss Chili and more. Tickets are available on Peatix, or are $28 at the door.

White Party (TBA)

Stalwart lesbian party planner Two Queens Asia's annual White Party is something of a regional event for queer women and is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. (Last year, there were something like 2,000 women in attendance.) The date is currently said to be "mid-2017" but we know the venue is Sentosa's new casual beach club, Ola.

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